Mining Companies Continue to See Potential in MexicoBy Karin Dilge | Thu, 08/11/2022 - 10:00
This past Wednesday, a mine collapsed in Sabinas, Coahuila leaving 10 mine workers trapped while the government and civil organizations are working toward their rescue. Despite the notable catastrophe, it has been recently reported that accidents in the Mexican mining sector have decreased. Moreover, mineral production and prices are experiencing instability due to geopolitical uncertainty. Above all, mining companies remain optimistic about the Mexican market’s mining potential.
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On August 3, inhabitants of Sabina, Coahuila reported the collapse of a coal mine known as Las Conchas. The collapse led to the swift mobilization of all levels of government and civil organizations. Nevertheless, much uncertainty remains regarding the accident.
Combined with the accident that occurred in Sabina, Coahuila, the country has experienced more than 270 mining accidents in the past decade. These catastrophes have killed 270 miners and injured another 108. However, in recent years, such accidents have become rarer, as mining companies improved safety across all areas.
Mexican mining operators end up losing around 30 percent of their products to petty thefts and robberies carried out by organized criminal groups, said Jaime Gutiérrez, President, CAMIMEX, as insecurity appears to be on the rise in the country.
The global transition to greener technologies has been slowed down by rising prices for oil and raw materials that serve as key inputs for clean energy infrastructure and new technologies. Experts say that countries like Mexico, key producers of oil and minerals, will benefit greatly from the shifting market environment.
Gold production in the 10 main gold-producing mines in Latin America saw a decrease in 2Q22 compared to 2Q21. Production stood at 1.10Moz, a 5.5 percent fall compared to the 1.16Moz of 2Q21 and less than the 1.12Moz of 1Q22.
Coeur Mining reported its 2Q22 financial results, highlighting that despite lower ore prices, the company increased earnings and remains on track to reach its 2022 production guidance. In addition, the company will significantly increase its investment in its Mexican Palmarejo asset due to optimistic results from ongoing exploration efforts.
Alien Metals has provided an update on its Mexican projects San Celso and Donovan 2 in Zacatecas. The company announced that local stakeholders have rebuffed the company's drilling proposal in a priority area. Therefore, no further exploration work will take place until the issue is resolved.
Napoleón Gómez Urrutia, Senator for Morena and Head of the National Union of Mining, Metallurgical, Iron, Steel and Similar Worker of the Mexican Republic (SNTMMSSRM) said he would file a complaint under the USMCA to unblock negotiations regarding a labor dispute that has carried on for more than 15 years in Zacatecas.
The Cobalt Institute (CI) revealed data indicating that the global cobalt supply will increase in 2022, while global demand for electric vehicles (EV) drops as the battery industry experiences a slump, particularly in China. The result is a drop in cobalt prices.
After a month of negotiations, workers decided to lift a strike at Minera y Metalúrgica El Boleo (MMB), located in Baja California Sur. The operation is owned by the Asian minerals producer Korea Resources. Workers decided to end the labor dispute amid growing concerns about the economic repercussion of the mine’s closure on the surrounding communities.
As companies begin implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals and factor in an environmental, social and governance (ESG) business approach, women are participating more in areas where they were historically excluded. In Mexico, the mining industry is paving the way to improve working conditions for women, having recently increased its share of women working in the sector.
Canada’s MAG Silver reported promising production results for 2Q22. In addition, the corporation announced it anticipates its new electrical system to be finalized during the next weeks. MAG’s partly-owned Juanicipio project continues to reach its expected production levels.